We conducted a Doughnut Dash not long ago. Our goal was to hit as many doughnut shops as possible and find the best doughnuts in town.
It was a worthy Saturday morning endeavor, although the dash part of the Doughnut Dash was a misnomer. We had five little ones in tow.
You don't dash anywhere when passengers require car seats with five-point harnesses, booster seats and stubborn seat belts.
Our mission was noble, but overly ambitious. We made a total of two stops, which was probably one too many.
The kids are at an age where they talk a lot-all of them-all at the same time.
We are driving along when a 4-year-old yells, "Hey! I know where we are. This is where the policeman stopped my mom!"
"Is that so?" I ask.
"Yes. But we're not going to tell Dad about it!"
We reach our destination and unload like clowns bursting out of a phone booth.
They scramble to the counter and begin placing their orders. Sprinkles-any and everything with sprinkles. If there are doughnuts that are nothing but sprinkles, we'll take those, too.
Wolfing them down, one announces, "I made a card for Mommy with a heart that says, 'I love you.' Mommy says it is so special she is going to save it forever."
"Wow!" exclaims her older sister with sprinkles plastered to her face. "She usually trashes everything I make."
"I need to use the restroom," announces another. "My hands are sticky."
Five kids parade to the restroom to wash their sticky hands, each returning with clean hands only to re-engage sticky doughnuts.
"THESE ARE THE BEST!" one of them yells. She is loud because she is the youngest of three and must be loud to be heard.
The staff behind the counter hears her, smiles and nods approvingly.
"YOU KNOW WHY THESE ARE SO GOOD?" she asks.
The staff leans in. "BECAUSE THIS NEW STORE IS CLEANER THAN THEIR OTHER STORE!"
"Keep your voice down," I whisper.
"OK!" she shouts. "BUT IT IS, GRANDMA. IT'S BIGGER AND WAY CLEANER!"
"Look at my arms," shouts one of the girls.
"What about them?"
"They're HAIRY! I think I'm turning into Daddy."
Laughter explodes, the table rocks and napkins fly as everyone compares arm hair.
"I have long legs like Daddy," another says.
"Dancers have long legs," says another.
"You know what I'm going to be when I grow up?"
A couple stops by to comment on how well behaved the girls are. The table begins bouncing as the soon-to-be Rockette warms up her high-kicks from below.
"Thanks," I say. "It's still early."
The husband begins reading coffee selections aloud from the menu.
"Dark Roast Caribou – "
They are wiggling and giggling, an uncontainable mass of life, motion and energy. Sprinkles ricochet off the table in every direction.
"Dream Bean Coffee – " he continues. There's now a kid on his lap, another one draped around his neck and he has sprinkles in his hair.
"Look at that last coffee." he says. "It's called Jamaican Me Crazy"
"HEY! THAT'S WHAT MY MOM SAYS EVERY DAY!"
(Lori Borgman is a columnist, author and speaker. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.)